Loch Long Salmon
Beinn Reithe

WelcomeAboutThe Beinn Reithe ProposalBenefits


Thank you for visiting this virtual exhibition for Loch Long Salmon’s proposed development for a low-impact salmon farm, located at Beinn Reithe in Loch Long.

Loch Long Salmon’s ambition is to change salmon farming for good, by utilising low-impact farming methods that deliver environmental and fish welfare improvements as well as wider economic benefits for Scotland and its coastal communities.

In light of ongoing Covid-19 restrictions, it is unfortunately not possible to host face-to-face consultation events. However, we hope you will take some time to explore this virtual exhibition to find out more about us and the Beinn Reithe project.

This exhibition will set out our proposal, as well as some background to Loch Long Salmon and our approach.

We also invite you to attend our open virtual information sessions where you can hear directly from members of the Loch Long Salmon team about our proposal, and put your questions to the team.

© 2021 Loch Long Salmon. All rights reserved.

TimelineThe TeamFeedback

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Your feedback is very important to us and we are enthusiastic to hear your views. We invite you to complete the feedback form after viewing the materials. To speak with our team, please 
contact us.

About Loch Long Salmon

Our Low-Impact Farming Method 

Loch Long Salmon was formed in 2019 with a clear ambition: to develop and operate low-impact salmon farms that exclusively utilise semi-closed containment systems that deliver environmental benefits and improve the welfare of our fish.  

We firmly believe that our farming systems and method will change salmon farming in Scotland for good.

Semi-closed containment is a new type of salmon farming system that has been developed, trialled, and commercially adopted in Norway.  These systems prevent sea lice outbreaks, capture organic waste from the farm, prevent seals from interacting with the farmed fish and provide a secure and stable rearing environment for the farmed animals.

These farming enclosures have been proven by a growing list of operators in Norway and have recently been introduced in Canada. As our flagship proposal, Beinn Reithe is the first project of this kind in Scotland.  Loch Long Salmon will only use semi-closed systems at the Beinn Reithe location.

How it works 
Unlike conventional open net pens, semi-closed containment systems continuously pump deeper water from below the more variable and biologically active surface layer into the farming enclosure.  This is surrounded by an impermeable and opaque barrier.  This system delivers a number of benefits to the environment and the welfare of the farmed fish.

Water leaves the enclosures through a series of ports. The majority of the faeces and any uneaten feed are captured in the sump at the bottom of the system. The waste is pumped from the sump and transported back to a shorebase for treatment via a low-pressure surface pipe.

Loch Long Salmon will use this technology to maintain optimum water supply, oxygen saturation and flow regime, providing the best environment for our salmon to live and grow in.

To attend an information session, please register using the provided links.

Thursday 22 July 19:00-21:00 Register hereFriday 23 July 10:00-12:00 Register here

Low-impact, high welfare 
Loch Long Salmon is passionate about sustainability in the aquaculture sector and the welfare of our fish. By using these innovative systems to farm our salmon in the natural ocean environment, we will deliver a number of benefits both to the environment and to the welfare of the farmed fish.

A significant advantage to the semi-closed system is that they prevent sea lice from entering salmon enclosures. This alleviates a major welfare concern for farmed fish by removing the parasitic burden as well as the potential for transmittal back to wild salmon populations and impact on other species such as freshwater pearl mussels.

As there are no sea lice concerns with a semi-closed system, the need for chemical treatments for sea lice is eliminated. The impact of the salmon farm on water quality and sea bed (‘benthic’) ecology is improved.

Additionally, the system also enhances the welfare of the farmed salmon. With no sea lice treatments being required, there is no need to handle stock meaning that there is reduced scope for damage to the skin or scales of the fish. This results in improved general health and resilience to other bacterial or viral pathogens - indeed, salmon grown in these systems have been shown to have better overall health conditions.

Treated waste will be used as a resource in the circular economy. Potential uses for this organic ‘waste’ resource include fertiliser ingredients for use in land-based farming, and green energy production by anaerobic digestion.

The semi-closed system captures waste in a sump at the bottom of the enclosure.  This is removed from the farm rather than being dispersed across the seabed. The benthic impact per kilo of salmon farmed is therefore significantly reduced.

Deeper water, which is not only free of sea lice, is more stable and contains less plankton and jellyfish. This means that there is an optimal environment for the salmon, leading to improved growth and survival.  Additionally, these benefits allow the farmer to increase the stocking density of the enclosures and still deliver better environmental conditions for the stock and improved salmon welfare.

The semi-closed system allows greater control of the water quality within it, by improving flow rate, oxygen saturation and temperature regulation, allowing for healthy fish to be grown with a reduced marine footprint.  More fish from less farms means less marine space and less visual impact per fish produced.  Even with a higher stocking rate, salmon grown in these systems in Norway have demonstrated improved survival, better feed conversion ratios and faster growth rates – ensuring that high welfare outcomes are delivered, with a lower environmental impact.

The impermeable and opaque barrier within the semi-closed system eliminates the requirement for underwater acoustic deterrent devices by hiding the farmed stock from seals and preventing their interest and interference. This alleviates concerns about the impact of underwater acoustic deterrent devices on other marine species such as seals, whales, dolphins and porpoise.

The double barrier combination of impermeable bag and internal net significantly reduces the risk of salmon escaping from the farm – therefore diminishing the risk of escapees interacting with wild salmon stocks.  This particular site is also in a very sheltered location further reducing the risk of salmon escapes due to storm damage.

The Beinn Reithe Proposal

Project outline
The proposed project consists of the construction, installation and operation of a low impact fish farm at Beinn Reithe utilizing semi-closed farming enclosures.  The farm will have a maximum allowed biomass of up to 4,000-tonnes.  The farm will be situated approximately 3km east of the peak of Beinn Reithe adjacent to the western bank of the upper reaches of Loch Long, in the Firth of Clyde. The site is expected to be operational in 2023.

Land and marine components diagram

Site visualisation diagrams

Access and logistics
Salmon will be delivered to and from the farm via the sea, reaching Upper Loch Long from the Clyde system to the south.

From the land, the site will be accessed via the existing forestry road that joins the A83 at Ardgartan. Staff cars and supplier lorries will need access to the site on a daily basis. At peak biomass there will be up to an average of three lorry trips per day, bringing in oxygen and feed and removing waste from the site. To allow for this, the road will require upgrades.

Our final planning submission will include a detailed access and logistics plan. 

Farming Operations and Process
The farm will employ circa 12 people comprising a mix of salmon farming and technical roles – encompassing site management, farming and fish health technicians, site engineers and mechanics and a waste system specialist.  These skilled positions will be year-round and full-time positions.  Our team will be offered attractive terms and conditions of employment and salaries.

The farming system will have a requirement for at least one staff member being on-site 24 hours per day, with routine farming operations throughout the day. Loch Long Salmon intends on recruiting these posts locally as far as possible. Loch Long Salmon intend to use local supply and services wherever possible.

Two farming models may be used at the Beinn Reithe farm location.  A ‘post-smolt’ farming system or a ‘harvest’ farming system.

Post-smolt are fish that are grown in the farm for a period of months from when the fish are delivered to the farm as 80g to 100g salmon smolt and reared until the stock has an average weight of 600g to 1000g.  In this farming system, the post-smolt would be transferred to an existing conventional open net salmon farm and grown to full harvest size at this new location.  Environmental benefits are retained in the local area and research has shown that the benefits to fish health and welfare continue to benefit the stock started in a semi-closed farm with less sea lice treatments, better survival and faster growth all demonstrated.  When the stock reach transfer size, they would be transferred to the finishing farm in a well boat.  The farm would be left fallow for a period of weeks prior to re-stocking.

In the harvest farming system fish would be delivered to the farm at 80g to 100g and reared through to full harvest size (approximately 4.0kg to 6.5kg average weight).  The first harvest would occur at 11 or 12 months after stocking.  Fish ready for harvest would be transferred from the farming enclosure to the semi-closed harvest facility and would subsequently be harvested.  Stock would either be harvested on-site and transferred to the processing facility via a well boat or they would be transferred alive to a shore based station for harvesting.  The final fish would leave the site approximately 22 months after stocking.  The farm would be restocked after a fallow period of several weeks.

Circular economy 
Adding to the environmental credentials of our proposal, is the potential to add to the circular economy with captured waste from the fish farm.

At peak biomass, captured waste will be removed from the site up to six days a week in order to be re-utilised as a fertiliser component or as a waste to energy fuel or feedstock. This is already being done by a number of onshore facilities across Scotland.

The Beinn Reithe location is conveniently located near the central belt reducing waste and supply miles and minimising transport associated carbon emissions.

Regulation and licencing 
In parallel to the planning process, Loch Long Salmon will be applying for a Controlled Activities Regulations (CAR) licence through SEPA for a biomass licence of up to 4,000-tonnes. We will also seek to secure a Marine Licence and an Aquaculture Production Business Licence from Marine Scotland.

Environmental Impact Assessment 
When proposing a fish farm development, a comprehensive Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is required. An EIA for Beinn Reithe is currently being prepared by Arcus - an independent team of specialists who have been undertaking engineering and environmental surveys on and around the site since March 2020.

As part of this EIA process, consultation, advice and guidance is sought from a range of stakeholders including Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority, Scottish Environmental Protection Agency and Marine Scotland.  This guidance and advice will inform our final proposal, as well as valuable feedback from the local community on the project.

The purpose of the EIA is to gain an understanding of the environmental conditions on the site at Beinn Reithe. Once this is established, it is used to inform the design of the project and help minimise or manage adverse effects associated with the construction, operation and decommissioning of the project.

Once the design is finalised, the EIA will then assess the environmental effects associated with the project, be they adverse or positive, and present them within an EIA Report. The EIA Report will form part of the planning application, intended to be lodged later this year, and will inform the decision-making process.

The EIA assesses and considers the potential effects of a full range of technical and environmental sensitivities, including: landscape and visual, ecology (terrestrial, coastal and marine), ornithology, hydrology, noise, traffic and transportation, archaeology and cultural heritage, land-use and socio-economics and tourism.

For example:

Landscape and Visual:

  • Experienced landscape consultants have been tasked with helping us create a carefully designed fish farm.

  • Our objective approach, which follows guidance methods, is used to minimise any potential effects on the surrounding landscape and visual resource, and on the people who experience these views. 

  • A comprehensive landscape and visual assessment will be prepared, which will include visualisations from viewpoints around the project. These visualisations will help shape and inform the ongoing design of the layout.

Wildlife and the Water Environment:

  • Independent experts have been undertaking bird, ecology and water surveys on and around the site.

  • The surveys have been discussed with stakeholders including NatureScot, SEPA and Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority and will inform the final design. The EIA Report will include full details of these surveys.

  • Our aim is to promote and deliver responsible fish farming and the design of the project will take into account such features and ensure appropriate mitigation is in place to protect wildlife and the water environment.


  • A robust noise assessment is being undertaken to ensure that the project can operate within acceptable noise limits at all residential properties in accordance with best practice guidelines.

  • Background noise monitoring has been undertaken at nearby properties, which enables us to understand the noise environment around the site and design the Development accordingly.

Tourism and Recreation:

  • Loch Lomond and the Trossachs Local Development Plan contains specific policies intended to protect and enhance visitor experience and recreational interest. Full regard will be had to these during when undertaking the robust tourism and recreation assessment for the development.

Benefits for the community

Loch Long Salmon is committed to bringing forward a proposal that builds on the positive contribution of the salmon farming sector to Scotland’s rural economy.

If approved, our proposal will create circa 12 permanent full-time equivalent posts at the proposed development site. As far as possible, we will utilise and procure from local suppliers throughout development, construction and operation.  We will require electrical and mechanical services for the shore base and farm equipment including for our water treatment system, pumps, feed equipment and general office and storage building.  We will require IT support for our physical infrastructure.  During the build phase we will need road enhancements, shore base developments including buildings and concrete pads for supplier equipment.  We will invite local businesses to tender for this work and where possible we will support local business.

In addition to these economic opportunities, Loch Long Salmon is committed to being a responsible neighbour and to delivering wider benefits to the communities close to the Beinn Reithe site.

Should consent be awarded, we will implement a community benefit fund which supports local needs and aspirations.

Loch Long Salmon is enthusiastic to start a conversation with the local community as to how a community benefit fund might support local priorities. We are committed to close engagement and partnership work with neighbouring communities to ensure that a future, locally-administered fund can support those priorities long-term.

Project timeline and next steps

A review of potential sites was undertaken to assess feasibility from a technical, economic and environmental perspective. The Beinn Reithe site was selected as it has the appropriate characteristics for a marine fish farm, and impacts for sensitive receptors and designation are considered minimal.

The Loch Long Salmon team met with numerous stakeholders within the community, and representatives from environmental and regulatory bodies, throughout this process.

Site Selection

Loch Long Salmon submitted its Scoping Report to Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park Authority.

November 2020

March 2021

Scoping Responses were  recieved and considered. These responses are fed into the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).

May-July 2021

Baseline information is gathered for the EIA.
Loch Long Salmon is holding a virtual public exhibition detailing the proposal, as well as consultation events to gather feedback from the community.

July-August 2021

Loch Long Salmon will analyse feedback from the consultation events and feed these into the refinement of the design of the fish farm.

Submit Planning Application
September 2021

The planning application will be submitted to the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park Authority. The planning submission will be accompanied by an EIA Report which presents the  results of all studies undertaken.

Await Decision
Winter 2021

The Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park Authority will review the application. Members of the public and other stakeholders will have the opportunity to make representations to the National Park Authority and these will inform its decision on the application.

Spring - Winter 2022/23

If approved, constrution will begin imminently after consent. Construction typically takes 12 months and planning conditions are used to carefully manage construction elements

First Operations
Spring -Autumn 2023

The fish farm will become fully operational and will support c.12 jobs.

Stewart Hawthorn
Director, Loch Long Salmon

Stewart has worked in the international aquaculture sector for more than 30 years in senior leadership roles in Scotland, Canada and New Zealand. He has been responsible for farming operations including freshwater recirculating aquaculture systems, marine farming systems and complex breeding improvement programmes.  He is currently Owner and Director of Trimara Services UK Ltd, an aquaculture equipment and services company working with customers in Scotland and internationally.
Stewart has led the commercial operations for Grieg Seafood in North America, including the development of a successful and award-winning super-premium branded salmon, Skuna Bay Salmon.

The team

Christoph Harwood
Director, Loch Long Salmon

Christoph is Managing Director and a founder of Simply Blue Aquaculture, which was established in 2018 with a view to developing new salmon farming models in Scotland.  He is also a Director of Simply Blue Group.

As a Director of Loch Long Salmon, Christoph brings extensive experience from the marine energy sector. Having held senior positions in environmental finance and tidal energy technology businesses, Christoph also brings experience of working in start-ups and knowledge of key environmental issues.

Mark Shotter
Project Manager, Simply Blue Aquaculture

Mark is project managing the planning, consenting and engineering of the low-impact, semi-closed sites for Loch Long Salmon, starting with the site at Beinn Reithe.

Mark has a passion for sustainability and the ocean environment. As a project manager he has experience in energy, engineering and the marine environment. He also brings experience of managing engineering projects and operations around the world in often challenging environments.

Loch Long Salmon is working with Arcus Consultancy Services, a specialist environmental and planning consultancy with extensive experience leading environmental impact assessments for aquaculture developments. Arcus have a track record of assessing aquaculture developments across Scotland and will support Loch Long Salmon by proving expert planning and environmental support for Beinn Reithe.

Arcus’ are managing the EIA for all technical assessments including ecology, ornithology, noise, hydrology, transport, cultural heritage and socio-economics and tourism. All of Arcus’ teams are accredited with their respective professional bodies.


The window for feedback to Loch Long Salmon’s public consultation for the Beinn Reithe Fish Farm proposal has now closed and we have submitted our Planning Application to the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park.  To comment on the Planning Application please click here.

If you would like to discuss the project with a member of the Loch Long Salmon team, you can contact us directly at:

E  info@lochlongsalmon.com
T  0131 618 6497

Loch Long Salmon Ltd, 21 Young Street, Edinburgh, EH2 4HU

You can also visit our website at: www.lochlongsalmon.com

Welcome to our downloads section.


Feed Statement

For illustrative purposes only.

Loch Long Salmon’s application for planning permission will consist of marine components and shore base components.

Marine farm detail

  • Up to four circular shaped marine farming enclosures each with an outer diameter of up to 50m and a square harvesting facility with a side length of up to 50m, all being semi-closed containment systems. These enclosure will sit in single file formation in an 80m x 80m mooring grid approximately 300m from the western bank of Loch Long. Each enclosure may have a 6m long, 2m high shed structure containing electrical and other critical support systems and will have up to eight low head pumps installed below the water line with some visible structures on the superstructure.

  • In the vicinity of the enclosures will also be a number of small workboat moorings that will be used on the farm day to day.

  • The site will be connected to the shorebase by floating and submerged supply lines which will send power, feed and oxygen to the site and receive waste water and data in the other direction to the shore. The floating bundle of supply lines will be cradled in a floating pontoon up to 100m from the shore before extending out to the enclosures on the surface of the water.

  • Underwater lights used to aid with fish health and growth.

  • All the items will be marked and have navigational lighting in accordance with advice from the Northern Lighthouse Board and the Queens Harbour Master.

Shore base detail

  • Supporting the marine farm on the foreshore of the western bank of Loch Long will sit the shore base.

  • The shorebase will house all the support systems such as electrical, oxygen, feed, ensilage, and wastewater, as well as a single-storey building containing office, workshop, laboratory, welfare and storage areas with external parking.

  • The oxygen system will consist of liquid oxygen storage vessels and vaporizers that will consistently maintain optimal oxygen saturation for fish health in the enclosures. The vessels themselves will have a maximum height of 15m.

  • Feed will be stored in silos and be blown or pumped to the site through air or water filled pipes respectively.

  • Waste water will be treated on shore where it will be pumped through a number of screens and centrifuges. A slurry like product will be produced, stored and removed regularly from site and the clean water will be piped back in to its native water.

  • Any fish mortalities will be treated using an onsite ensilage unit.

  • All items will be powered by a new grid connection with back up generators in place.

  • The road from the site to the A83 will require some upgrade to allow for vehicles during construction and operation as well as the accommodate the new power cable.

The marine farm components of the project consist of:

  • Up to 4 circular shaped semi-closed containment marine farming enclosures with a diameter of up to 50m;

  • A square shaped semi-closed harvesting facility with a side length of up to 50m;
  • A mooring system;

  • Workboat moorings;

  • A floating pontoon

  • Underwater and navigational lighting. 

Further details are set out below.

The shore base components consist of:

  • A building containing office, workshop and storage areas;

  • Up to 4 oxygen storage vessels with a max. height of 15m;

  • Up to 4 feed silos with a max. height of 10m;

  • Organic waste ensilage;

  • A slipway;

  • A water treatment plant including wastewater storage tank with a max. height of 13m;

  • Mortality handling station;

  • Feed, oxygen, data and wastewater pipes to supply and service the marine farm;

  • Access upgrades along the forestry road that joins with the A83; and

  • A grid connection, electrical infrastructure and cables.
Sea Lice Statement
Site Layout - Indicative Design
Frequently Asked Questions
Privacy NoticeCookie Notice
Exhibition Materials PDF
Information Session Presentation